Sunday, April 20, 2014

Who is going to budge?

Warning:  Rant ahead.

As you may know or not, my beautiful daughter went to treatment at Hazelden, over 60 days ago, and is still going strong in her recovery.  It is such a awesome thing to watch her make such good, sound, choices. She is an amazing kid. Like, the coolest kid in our town. WAY more mature than her peers, and especially me, at her age. I beam with pride daily. 

You heard my rant before, when I couldn't get her into treatment. Not just at Hazelden. But anywhere. I had to beg, borrow and beg. I'm lucky. I know people (sort of) because of my big mouth, and I was able to get her in (with the help of a recovering person with great pull, who I didn't ask permission mention here and, who walks, runs, cartwheels the talk of recovery.  You should read her book, Guts.  It is a GREAT book for anyone, hilarious, relatable, and totally helpful.), and the rest on loan until we can pay. 

Without her help, my daughter couldn't go to treatment, and probably wouldn't be making the great choices she is today.  There are many people in my insurance situation who don't get to go to treatment.  Especially one like Hazelden.  There are many good treatment centers, but Hazelden is supposed to be one of the best.  I got LUCKY. 

It was explained to me that ChampVA (our insurance) pays $0.10 on the dollar for treatment. Which explains why NO treatment center will take it. I get that. There is something totally wrong with the fact that I can tell them (with one fibroid tumor) that I'm bleeding too much and get a hysterectomy, (I haven't), but my kid is blacking out every time she drinks, and they don't pay for shit.  

And also, the really nice treatment centers, such as Hazelden, don't take county funding either. My guess is that it is for the same reason. 

Now a friend of mine, who has GOOD insurance, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, went to treatment for the first time recently.  She was asked to leave treatment, because her insurance wouldn't cover anything past eight days. As soon as she was safely detoxed, she was asked to leave.  I know why this happens. The insurance covers the detox part, and then says," I bet even though you've been drinking yourself blind for ten years, you'll do great in outpatient. So pack your bags, and carry on."

She was taken aback when she was asked to leave, she quickly relapsed, but says she is still trying every day. If she fails in outpatient, THEN maybe her insurance will cover the cost of inpatient. Will it be too late?  By that time, she could lose that job she has that pays her insurance. Because she couldn't get the treatment she needed. Then she would humbly get county funding, which the really well-known treatment centers, won't accept. 

If you had cancer, would you want the BEST treatment, or the half-ass treatment for your loved one?  Before this happened to my daughter, I would have said, "you can get into recovery from anywhere." Which I totally believe.  But since it was MY family, I got scared and I wanted the best for her.  Addiction is a deadly disease. But like so many things, the care isn't evenly distributed to the different "classes," and it sometimes isn't distributed at all. 

If so many insurance companies won't cover the costs of the amount of treatment people need, and treatment doesn't accept the low payments of assistance or these insurance companies low-ball payments, who is going to budge?  How will it get done?  How do we tell insurance companies that treatment works?  How do we get more people, more help?  

Just keep talking. Take some action. Share your success stories. 

My daughter got the 28-days that she needed, because I slightly know some extremely connected, piss and vinegar-filled people who know that treatment works and recovery is possible. And my kid is doing so great.  But many folks who don't have any strings, don't get help. If we are trying to change this, then let's do it.

Let's hope my friend gets the help she needs before it is too late and she loses too much.  It isn't fair.  

I'll be ranting about divorce soon.  I've got a LOT to say about it.  Graduation too.  Man things are changing!!


  1. I LOVED Guts. Read it in one day. Congrats to your daughter - you must be proud!

    1. It IS a great book. Thanks about my kid. She is an amazing girl.

  2. Praise GOD your daughter got the treatment she needed and is doing great.
    Its just not logical that the insurance companies and the counseling agencies cant seem to work realistic together.

    1. Thanks Holli, I do feel very lucky that she got the help she did. She is doing great.